Here are five of our favourite Granite City hotels, with the discerning guest in mind.
The Marcliffe Hotel and Spa
(North Deeside Rd, Pitfodels, AB15 9YA, 01224 861000)
The Marcliffe is the perfect hotel for the old-school among us, who prefer a well-established, tried and tested luxury experience. 65 per cent of guests have stayed at the Marcliffe before, and this emphasis on returning guests is what makes it such a success. Tony Blair and Rod Steward are among the distinguished past clientèle.
The interiors are reminiscent of a Scottish country estate, and the well tended gardens are a lovely place for an afternoon stroll. The city centre is less than 20 minutes away by car, and the River Dee is only a ten minute walk away.
The rooms, which come in classic, deluxe and suite varieties, are very pleasant places to inhabit. Neutral colours and sumptuous fabrics make you feel completely at ease, and the many thoughtful additions include fresh orchids, Molton Brown toiletries and complimentary newspapers.
Food is, of course, of a very high quality and mainly regional, with Scottish meat and fish taking pride of place on the menu. Over 100 whiskies and 400 wines are ripe for the picking, and staff are very knowledgeable about their selection.
The rate for an Executive Room is £150 from Friday to Sunday, and £170 from Monday to Thursday.
(49-53 Queen’s Rd, AB15 4YP, 01224 507097)
Conveniently close to the centre of town, this hotel is an oasis of calm in the busy city. The décor is fun and creative, with an emphasis on comfort as well as chic. The rooms are equipped with big beds and power showers to ensure you have an excellent night.
The star attractions of Malmaison are its leisure facilities. Its gym and spa will make sure you are in peak physical condition, providing spa days and grooming for both men and women.
Malmaison’s dinner menu is composed of classic British dishes, each with a quirky twist. If you get a chance, why not try one of the Malburgers, or a Black Angus steak? You can enjoy your meal in the pleasant tartan and leather surroundings of the Brasserie, complete with mounted deer heads. If the tradition-inspired restaurant gets you in a Scottish mood, you can order a Whisky Snug in the trendy Malbar. Also, don’t forget to check out the hotel’s scrumptious cream tea, to which you can add champagne or a cocktail, so you can continue the fun into the evening.
A room for two, including a two course meal and a bottle of wine, costs £109.
Palm Court Hotel
(81 Seafield Rd, AB15 7YX, 01224 310351)
In the heart of the West End is the four-star Palm Court Hotel, which makes friendly service and a relaxed environment its priority. The rooms are kitted out with plasma TVs, DVD players and hot drinks facilities, so that you can enjoy the sumptuous cushions and calming atmosphere to the fullest.
The Bothy Restaurant has a mix of traditional British and European dishes on its menu, with an added sprinkle of glamour. Look out for the intriguing hot smoked salmon linguine, and the roast duck breast with chorizo cassoulet. White tiles, pale wood, and gleaming cabinets of pottery make the restaurant a delightful place to drink and dine.
If you’re looking for something a bit more sociable, you can book a place at one of the hotel’s popular Murder Mystery Nights. Your ticket price includes a four course meal, a glass of wine, and a thrilling Christie-esque experience.
Rooms begin at a cost of £54.
The Aberdeen Altens Hotel
(Souter Head Rd, AB12 3LF, 01224 379240)
The Aberdeen Altens Hotel is very popular for business events and conferences, but it is not at all bland or corporate. In the lobby, there is an impressive Art Deco-style dome, and the 216 rooms’ understated design and soft duvets make your night a sublimely comfortable one. If you want to splash out on a slice of luxury, book a studio room which offers a swish living area and your own Nespresso machine.
The health and leisure club allows you to be as active or as lazy as you like, with an indoor pool, gym, sauna and steam room all at your disposal. Also, Aberdeen city centre is only a short drive away, giving you the whole city to explore.
Modern and classic dishes are the restaurant’s mainstays, served in a bright and airy room, decorated with a few splashes of colour.
The most Scottish of meals, the high tea, is also on offer, which includes toast and jam, a hearty supper, and a delectable scone.
The fully flexible room rate begins at £85.
The Chester Hotel
(59-63 Queen’s Rd, AB15 4YP, 01224 327777)
Having been fully refurbished in 2013, the Chester Hotel is a fresh-faced luxury destination which has a whole host of fantastic facilities at its fingertips.
There are 50 guest rooms and two suites in the hotel, all of which were designed by Aberdeen interior designers ‘Ambience’. Apple TVs, Nespresso machines and Egyptian cotton bed linen make for a tranquil stay. The neutrals and bold patterns of the décor will make you feel as sophisticated as your surroundings.
Head chef Kevin Dalgleish has great ambitions for the hotel’s restaurant, IX, with plans to make it one of Aberdeen’s top restaurants. It’s already well on the way to the top spot, with freshly prepared fish and grill dishes assembled before your very eyes. You can order your meal at one of the restaurant’s counters, where the chefs will use the charcoal-burning Josper grill to create fabulous meals. In 2015 the IX restaurant was awarded two AA rosettes, which is a testament to Dalgleish’s top-grade Savoy training and determination to succeed.
Beauty buffs won’t want to miss out on the IX Beauty parlour. Their tanning, nail care, body treatments and skin care are ideal for anyone who wants a bit of pampering during their stay.
Room prices begin at £75.65.